Introducing Interactive School Lunch Menus
proud to announce Whitsons Culinary Group, in
conjunction with the South Orangetown Central School
District, has developed a menu planning system designed
to make the monthly menus more interactive and
educational for our families.
The website provides you with
links to access important information about school
nutrition, an understanding of the Healthy Hunger Free
Kids Act (HHFKA) and much more.
lunch menus are now interactive (see menus above).
Click on any meal of interest and you will will be
prompted to connect to the Whitsons website where you
will be taken to a menu nutrition page which features
nutritional values for all meals served at school.
Visit the new menu program
Recent Changes to Healthy Hunger-Free Kids Act
Starting this school year, the Healthy Hunger Free Kids
Act mandates several changes to school lunch programs to
promote more nutritious meals for school children. These
standards are based on scientific recommendations and
identified age appropriate portion sizes and healthy
ranges for fruits, vegetables, grains, meats/meat
alternates and milk.
However, some of the changes have represented a
challenge for school lunch operators in menuing meals
that meet the calorie limits, as well as the stringent
grain and meat/meat alternate requirements for each age
group. These changes have had the unintended result of
limiting operators’ flexibility to serve the most
popular menu items daily, such as sandwiches, and have
also resulted in a decline in
school lunch participation in some districts.
Therefore, the USDA’s Food and Nutrition Service
recently ruled to eliminate the maximum limits for grain
and meat/meat alternates for the remainder of the
2012-13 year, provided the calorie guidelines per age
group are followed. What this means for your school
dining operations is that we will be able to offer pre-HHFKA
portions of grains, such as rolls, hoagies, bagels,
pasta and rice and proteins.
Even though these portion sizes will be larger, they
will still comply with the age-specific calorie limits
established by the HHFKA. This change will also allow us
to offer a wider variety of items and combinations that
were not possible before, such as garlic bread with
All other HHFKA related changes will remain the same:
Vegetables are still divided in 5 subgroups (dark
green, red/orange, legumes, starchy, other);
There is no limit on the amount of fruits and
Fruit and vegetable components must be on the lunch
tray as part of a reimbursable
- Calorie maximums for each age group remain
Only 1% or fat-free plain white milk or fat-free
flavored milk can be served.
Update to Healthy Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010
Dear South Orangetown Families,
This letter is an update to our previous communications from the
spring about the new Federal Government legislation, Healthy
Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010. As you know, the South Orangetown
Central School District enacted its Wellness Policy and
Regulations in June 2006, well before the requirements now set
forth by the Federal Government. SOCSD has been providing meal
choices for the past several years that meet or go beyond the
new mandated guidelines for 2012-13. However, as part of the new
legislation there will be some minor changes to the selection
choices such as, increases in fruits and vegetables, more
lean/vegetable based protein sources like beans and legumes,
changes in portion sizes, and different meal components. The
Government made these changes for the same reason we did in
2006, the rising rate of childhood obesity, as well as the
health complications that might ensue.
The objective of this legislation is to promote healthy foods in
their natural form, identify appropriate portion sizes, and
educate our children to make positive dietary choices. The new
program requirements continue what we instituted in 2006, which
is to ensure exposure to a greater variety of fruits and
vegetables. In addition, whole grains, meats, and meat
alternatives will reflect the 2010 Guidelines for Americans that
specify portion sizes based on grade levels (grades K-5, 6-8,
9-12). Overconsumption and distorted portion sizes will be
greatly reduced with the revised nutrition standards. Low fat
and fat free milk varieties will continue to be offered.
As part of the new legislation, we are now required to charge a
minimum average price for all school buildings. The charge
cannot be less than the average price that the government
reimburses schools participating in the National School Lunch
Program. As a result, in order to be in compliance with the new
Federal and State regulations, the District was required to
increase the cost of lunch: $2.75 Grades 6-12 and $2.50 Grades
K-5. Please see links above regarding the National School Lunch Program for
Free & Reduced Price Meal applications.
The obesity epidemic, as well as the increased prevalence of
diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol and other health
complications, affects an increasing proportion of our nation’s
youth. Access to a healthier school environment will promote a
healthier lifestyle. By educating our children on how to make
smart food selections, we will create a positive message for a
longer and healthier tomorrow.
For more information, contact the Food Service Director at
Whitson’s Food Service Management and review this webpage for information
on menus and updates regarding the food service program.
Updates to School
Lunch Program - July 2012
purpose of the new legislation, Section 205 of the
Healthy, Hunger Free Kids Act is to ensure that meals
are healthy and well-balanced and provide students all
the nutrition they need to succeed at school.
As part of the new legislation, SOCSD will now be
required to make some changes to our school lunch menus.
These changes will include significant increases in
fruits and vegetables and more
lean/vegetable based protein sources like beans and
legumes. Our menus will reflect these changes by
alternating the variety of lunch entrée choices.
check the SOCSD website for monthly menus, 2012-13
school lunch prices, Free & Reduced Price Meal
Applications, and information on MyPaymentsPlus, an
online meal system which allows parents to track
purchases made by their child through the school lunch
Already Surpasses New Mandated Federal School Meal
Requirements - May 2012
this year, the Federal government approved new
nutritional requirements for the “National School Lunch
and School Breakfast Programs”. We are happy to be able
to announce that the SOCSD has been providing meal
choices for the past several years that meet or go
beyond the new mandated guidelines for 2012-2013.
Through our food service provider Whitsons, SOCSD will
continue to look for ways to provide students with even
more varied and nutritional food choices that will
satisfy all future federal mandates.
However, as part of this new legislation, Section 205 of
the Healthy, Hunger Free Kids Act of 2010 will now
require school districts to charge a minimum average
price for all school buildings. The charge cannot be
less than the average price that the government
reimburses schools participating in the National School
Lunch Program. As a result, in order to be in compliance
with the new Federal and State regulations, the District
will be required to increase school lunch prices for
Meals will continue to offer:
fruit and vegetables daily
- 1% or
fat free hormone free milk
grain rich foods
Reduced sodium and fats
detailed information or to view the new guidelines,
PIN pad – English
PIN pad – Spanish
provide the best possible service in the cafeteria, the
District utilizes a computerized system for the sale of
meals. Each child in the school has a meal account that
is accessed with a personal identification number (PIN).
The PIN will remain the same each year. Each student
will enter their PIN onto a keypad. The student can
still pay cash; however, we encourage parents to prepay
money into their student’s account. When sending in
money by check, please include the student’s PIN #.
Please make checks payable to South Orangetown CSD
and have the student present the check to the cashier.
Incoming Kindergartners will receive their unique pin #
in a district mailing. If you have not received a letter
listing your child’s PIN # please contact our Food
Service Department at 845-680-1118 or
email@example.com. Please be aware that our food
service personnel and school building staff will have a
list of the students PINs in case your child forgets
The District implemented MyPaymentsPlus, an online
prepayment system. This system will enable the parent to
make payments online through a charge made to a credit
card or bank account. The parent will also have the
ability to track the purchases made by their child
whether they utilize the prepayment system or not. Click
on the MyPaymentsPlus button above to learn more.
Question: Could you please explain what the system is?
The system is a
computerized point of sale system where an account is
set up for each student and given a personal
identification number (PIN) to access this account.
Parents can pre-pay in any amount to their child’s
account. As the students purchase meals and a la carte
food, their account is debited. There is a built in
security system in that the student’s photo appears on
the screen when they enter their PIN number. This way
the cashier can verify the person using the account at
the moment. All transactions are recorded instantly on a
computer in the lunchroom. Any cashier can look up the
student’s balance at any time.
What are the advantages of this system?
The major advantages for the parents are
that they can pre-pay for their children’s lunch without
having to worry about sending in lunch money each day.
They could also rest assured that the money they send to
the cafeteria is used only for lunch. A student does not
have to have any cash with them to enjoy all the
selections in the lunch program; they just need a
balance in their debit account. The account is only
debited when meals or food are purchased. Remaining
balances will carry from year-to-year and be refunded
when a student leaves the District.
the students, the lunch line moves faster if all the
meals are prepaid. Students will notice how fast prepaid
transactions are processed and how much more time it
takes when people use cash. This gives the students more
time to enjoy their lunch period. A debit system also
helps young people learn the importance and value of
budgeting their resources by keeping to a daily budget.
Students also enjoy the relief of not having to be the
“banker” for some of their schoolmates, they can simply
say that they have no cash with them; their parents sent
their lunch money in by check.
Question: Can my child “charge” snacks on account?
Yes. If monies are deposited onto the General account
line, students can buy meals and snacks. Monies
deposited onto the Meal account line will allow students
to purchase strictly meals, snacks will not be allowed
to be purchased.
that all purchases, both meals and snacks, requires the
use of the use of a PIN.